Charles S. HAWKINS



Charles S. Hawkins, who resides on section 19 of Gilmanton township, is one of the oldest settlers of Benton county. He is an ex-soldier of the Civil war, and is deservedly held in high esteem by his fellowmen. He is engaged successfully in the culture of bees and has a pleasantly situated home, where he enjoys the comforts of life.

Mr. Hawkins was born in Indiana, August I1, 1841. His father, Obadiah Hawkins, was born in Indiana, and his mother, Mary (Humicker) Hawkins, was a native of Ohio. Our subject was born on a farm and remained there until he was sixteen years of age, attending the common school. He then went to southern Indiana and was engaged at farm work three years and then spent two years employed on a flat boat between Vevay, Indiana, and New Orleans. He enlisted for the Civil war August 11, 1862, and became a member of Company D, Ninety-third Indiana Infantry. He went at once to Memphis, Tennessee, and the first engagement in which he participated was May 15, 1863. He was at Jackson, Champion Hill, Vicksburg. and stayed in the latter place from May 18 until July 1, when he and his regiment went to the Black River to meet Johnson and his army. He then returned to Jackson and later to Vicksburg, and from thence to Memphis. There he was detached to a picket boat and was thus engaged for fourteen months, when he was relieved and joined his regiment at Eastport, in the eastern part of Tennessee. He went to New Orleans and from there to Dauphin Island. This was his last engagement, and he was moved from there to Montgomery and from thence was detailed as orderly and was mustered out of the service at Memphis, Tennessee, August 10, 1865. He went to Indianapolis, Indiana, and then to his old home. He moved to Minnesota and settled in Gilman township, Benton county, March 22, 1867. He took a homestead on the south half of the northwest quarter of section 20, township 37, range 29. This was a wild wooded country at the time and Indians were part of the inhabitants at that time. He put up a log shanty and for the first six years he did his farm work with oxen. He owns forty acres of good land, but does not follow general farming giving his attention to the culture of bees. He has one hundred and eighty hives and these yield him a good income, and he is enabled to gain a competence through his good management.

Mr. Hawkins was married March 18, 1866, to Nancy C. Puris, who was born in Indiana. Mr. Hawkins takes a hearty interest in all local public affairs and is at present one of the county commissioners of his county. He served as county commissioner for four years previous to his present term. He was school director in district 36 for eight years, and served six years as township clerk and fourteen years as justice of the peace.

Compendium of History and Biography of Central and Northern Minnesota (1904) p. 463

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